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Posts published by “FOSS Force Guest Writer”

Tiny Core Linux 7.1: Big Where It Counts

Jesse Smith

There’s an old cliché that promises “big things come in small packages.” Our reviewer takes a look at Tiny Core Linux and finds a lot of wallop in its 16MB size.

Most software grows and expands, taking on new features over time. While this can make software applications more useful, it also means more resources are required to run our programs. However, there are some software projects which strive to become ever more lean, more efficient and use fewer resources. One such project is Tiny Core Linux, a minimalist distribution which packs a lot of functionality into a very small system. The project’s website states:

A Usability Study of GNOME

Gina Dobrescu and Jim Hall

“Thou shalt make thy program’s purpose and structure clear … for thy creativity is better used in solving problems than in creating beautiful new impediments to understanding.”
~ “The Ten Commandments for C Programmers” by Henry Spencer

How easily can you use your computer? Today, the graphical desktop is our primary way of doing things on our computers; we start there to run web browsers, music programs, video players, and even a command line terminal. If the desktop is too difficult to use, if it takes too many steps to do something, or if the cool functionality of the desktop is hidden so you can’t figure out how to use it, then the computer isn’t very useful to you. So it’s very important for the desktop to get it right. The desktop needs to be very easy for everyone to use.

Whenever we think of how easily you can use a program, we’re really talking about the usability of that program. Developers sometimes discount usability and think of usability as making things look nice instead of adding new, useful features. Other times, developers assume usability is too difficult, something that only experts can do. But usability is a very important part of software development.

Why We Need FOSS Force

Robin ‘Roblimo’ Miller

Our guest writer offers his views on why you should support FOSS Force with your contribution to our Indiegogo fundraising campaign.

We are blessed with a good number of online news outlets that cover free and open source software. Why, then, should we care about FOSS Force?

For one thing, the more the merrier. The more eyes that are trained upon the development of “the people’s software,” the more its fame will spread, which means not only more users but more developers. And that means more — and more useful — free and open source software, which is good for all of us.

How About a Chromebook on Steroids?

Jim Anderson

There’s been a lot of interesting Linux news of late. Not just GNU/Linux, but all types of Linux, Android, Chrome OS, Firefox OS, embedded (IoT), cloud computing, cars, TVs, just about anything you can think of. But truth be told, I’d like to see more Linux on the desktop — just as Linus Torvalds said he would like to see.

The recent purchase of a Chromebook for my son got me thinking about a new opportunity for Linux on the desktop. This is not an idea for getting a standard GNU/Linux desktop to automagically replace all existing Windows desktops, but to leverage the cloud computing paradigm with a bulked­-up Chromebook-­like system that would be workable for 80 to 90 percent of personal, school, and business needs.

Steve Jobs: The Ultimate Enabler

Town Called DobsonTown Called Dobson

A couple of years ago I literally ran into “Woz,” Steve Wozniak, the inventor of the Apple II and co-founder of Apple Computer, while wandering in one of the geeky electronic parts shops in the bowels of Silicon Valley. When I realized whom I had almost accidentally knocked over, I squealed like a child, even though I was 46 years old at the time and well out of diapers. I can only imagine the self-humiliation I would have experienced if I had accidentally bumped into Steve Jobs at the farmer’s market in Palo Alto. I probably would have needed diapers.

Unicorn Media
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